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Direct Payment Support Service

The Direct Payment Support Service (DPSS) helps the person requiring support or their chosen representative to receive a direct payment so they can directly employ someone to meet their assessed care needs. It can support the person through the process of finding, employing, paying and training a personal assistant carer.

Direct Payment Support Service

Direct Payment Support Service


The Direct Payment Support Service (DPSS) team is here to help you if you have chosen to receive a direct payment.

As well as supporting adults and children with direct payments, we also offer support and training for those who work for them as personal assistants (PAs) or carers.


We provide the following services:

  • Employer support, advice and training
  • A PA register of personal assistant carers in Norfolk
  • Payment services (payroll), where we help you with payments to your employee
  • Training for working PA carers, or those who wish to work as one


Advice and support for employing a personal assistant carer

You’ll be an employer if you’re a person with care needs or their nominated person who employs (or wants to employ) a carer or personal assistant through their direct payment. We’ve set up a register of PA carers that you can search to find one that suits your needs.


If you want to work as a personal assistant carer

You’ll be an employee if you provide or are looking to provide care services to a person with care needs through their direct payment. If you’re a self-employed PA, this section also has useful advice for you. You can advertise your services by requesting a login to our register of PA carers.


If you get a direct payment to pay for supported activities

You may be getting direct payments from us but you don’t employ a PA.

If you have supported activities only you need to complete the expenses claim form, which you can download as a Word document or a PDF

Expenses Claim Form pdf

Expenses Claim Form

You’ll then need to send it to the Direct Payment Client Service Team (DPCST) County Hall, Martineau Lane, Norwich, NR1 2UE or email dpcst@norfolk.gov.uk.


If you’re looking for short breaks services for children

If you get a direct payment to pay for activities for a child or young person from the Short Breaks Team, please refer to your child’s Short Breaks Plan or contact the Short Breaks Team on 01603 692455.

Contact us

Telephone: 01603 223392

Email: DPCST@norfolk.gov.uk


Call us: 01603 223392

Email us: DPCST@norfolk.gov.uk

PA Register

Personal assistants

If you are looking for work as a personal assistant (PA) carer, our PA register allows you to advertise your services across the whole of Norfolk.

You can tell potential employers what services you can offer, in what area and the qualifications that you have.

The benefits of using the register  are:

  • It’s free to use and advertise
  • It’s easy to set up an account and advertise your service
  • It’s simple to update and change information
  • It’s accessible to all
  • It’s promoted by our DPSS service to all new and existing Direct Payment service users

You’ll need to provide a copy of your right to work before we can approve your advert. The GOV.UK website has guidance on what is accepted.

We’ll accept copies of your right to work. You can email a scanned copy or a photo from a camera phone to dpssemploymentservices@norfolk.gov.uk

You’ll also need to provide your right to work evidence at any interview you attend.

We also offer training courses for those who wish to work as PA carers.


Your employment status

If you go to work as a PA for someone, you may either be employed or self-employed.

There’s a difference between the two in terms of your rights.



You’re employed if you work for someone under an employment contract.

Employees have extra employment rights which include:

  • Statutory Sick Pay
  • Statutory Redundancy Pay
  • Time off for emergencies
  • The right to request flexible working
  • Statutory maternity, paternity, adoption and shared parental leave and pay
  • Minimum notice periods if their employment will be ending: for example, if an employer is dismissing them
  • Protection against unfair dismissal

Some of these rights will only apply to you after a certain length of continuous employment with your employer. Your contract may state how long this period is.



You’re self-employed if you run your business for yourself, taking responsibility for its success or failure.

Self-employed workers aren’t paid through PAYE and you don’t have the same rights as employees.

However, you still have protection for health and safety and, in some cases, protection against discrimination.

You will also have rights and responsibilities set out in the terms of the contract you have with your client.

Call us: 01603 223392

Email us: DPCST@norfolk.gov.uk

Suffolk Independent Living

Suffolk Independent Living is an advice and support service for people employing their own personal assistants, support workers and carers. Our adverts are placed by people wanting to employ their own workers. Suffolk Independent Living enables people to have choice and control over their own care and support while supporting them to be good employers. For more information, please visit our website; https://www.suffolkindependentliving.org.uk/